NCWQ Habitat Report: July 2021

Mitigating Isolation through Urban Design

By Dr Donnell Davis, NCWQ Habitat Adviser

Habitat – Designing our homes, neighbourhoods and cities to mitigate isolation


Isolation is defined generally as ‘separation, segregation or quarantine’. Urban Design can be described as the physical, functional and aesthetic structures that enable people to engage with each other to feel a ‘sense of belonging’ and to feel ‘sense of place’ in their environment. This report recommends 4 actions for Queensland Parliamentary Committee Inquiry 2021.

I address options for designing to prevent and mitigate the impacts of forced or voluntary isolation, in several scales and across generations. There are different needs for children, youth, families and the ageing populations.

A special category is the Homeless. Some of these have been addressed in UD4P Urban Design for Pandemics Series in NCWQ quarterly reports, but the matter of loneliness can be structurally considered as well. However, much can be done at community level (tactical) while others must call upon all levels of governments to cooperate to deliver long-term infrastructure for wellbeing. With the announcement of the 2032 Olympics for South East Queensland region, there is an impetus to design-in proven features to prevent and mitigate isolation for current and future generations.

Download the full PDF report here (1mb)



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